Sunday, August 28, 2011


Just watched the Manchester City v Tottenham and Manchester United v Arsenal games.. Unbelievable football from the two Manchesters..
In terms of the league, Tottenham are sinking fast and Arsenal are in desperate need of 1) A top player to replace Nasri/Fabregas 2) A restoration of the self-belief that seems to have evaporated since they qualified for champ league last week. Amazing goals though. And.. I have Rooney and Nani in my fantasy team.. so pretty happy.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Freedom issues..

1) 'I went to a journalist'. As an intelligence officer, you cannot give classified material away without the receiver holding an appropriate clearance level. If in doubt.. do not shout. It is not up to individuals to decipher the legality of complex intelligence programs. Clearly, where evident wrongdoing occurs it should be brought to light.. but Mr. Drake's case is less than convincing in this particular scenario. (I do believe in the journalist right to publish whatever intelligence they have access too... hopefully with caution... just not the right of an intelligence officer etc to leak that information)

2) Rice and Cheney both have their bios coming out in the next few weeks.

3) Interesting how no one gives a shit about Africa... So sad. Most people are satisfied with an annual Bob Geldof concert and throwing a few dollars/pounds at 'Africa' each year. Think of the support that we could bring to bear for Congolese Government if we really wanted to.

4) Another Japanese Prime Minister. The country needs some strong leadership that can win the support of the public and push through a coherent debt reduction plan, alongside recovery from the earthquake.

5) It is appropriate that there be a memorial at the Flight 93 crash site.

6) A slightly comical event in Libya.

7) The UK debate surrounding the censure of social media sites during riots is stupid. Social media exists to propel freedom of speech. Where criminal acts take place online, the police can follow these actors to the source of their crime and can prosecute them with the evidence of their words-following action. Constricting the freedom of a country to make it easier to catch a few criminals is truly absurd. Sometimes I wonder what planet some politicians are on. Though, I suppose I am not alone in that regard.

8) Red Sox crushed Toronto last night. Thanks Gonzalez.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cold Truths

1) Gadaffi's regime is finished. The question now.. what follows? Libya's tribal society and the distinct absence of  institutions necessary for a functioning state are not conducive to a peaceful, democratic transfer of power. Expect blood shed, instability and general chaos.

2) Meanwhile in Syria.. people are still being shot on the streets. I will hopefully have a Guardian piece come out on Hezbollah's role in Syria.

3) To me, Jon Huntsman is the best Republican candidate. Read the transcript of his weekend interview on ABC News here - honesty and tough decisions.

4) The Turkish Military is attacking the Kurdish separatist movement - Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in Northern Iraq. Tensions in another part of the ME..

Monday, August 8, 2011


Put simply, in a system in which the penalties for serious public disorder are weak and the power given to business owners to defend their property is almost non-existent, then rioting is exceptionally hard to stop. This situation is exacerbated by the inability of the Metropolitan Police to apply the level of coercive force needed to bring the disorder to a resolution (that only a political decision can resolve). This is not to say that the police should apply unwarranted violence, but the current tactics of containment are woefully insufficient to deal with roving gangs that have greater a 
dispersion mobility than the police.